By Stephen Bugno
I’m sitting on the balcony of my small hotel room in Giron and it’s raining again. It’s rained almost every day I’ve been in Colombia, about 3 ½ weeks straight. The sky is dark. It’s 7 pm. The yellow-orange glow of the street lamps reflect off the puddles forming on the uneven cobblestone streets.
It’s another Saturday night and loud music is spilling out of the bars and discos and into the open air of this small town. People are out walking around even though it’s a wet evening. I go out.
If you stay underneath all the big overhangs which protrude out from each building and house extending over the sidewalks, you won’t get too wet. And this is what I do. I love this characteristic of Colombian colonial towns. I walk around, through the wet darkness, stopping to watch people, to warm myself up with a drink, to see that Saturday night still goes on in the wetness.
I came to Giron because it is a colonial town—the houses are all preserved in the whitewashed style. I plan to do a sort of colonial town hopping. I’m finding the small towns and villages here very pleasant and doing my best to avoid the big cities.
There’s nothing really to do in Giron and that’s OK with me. It’s just a place to relax, have coffee at a bakery, walk the cobbled streets and enjoy looking at the whitewashed buildings. I thought Giron would be quieter and more remote, and that’s why I chose to stay the night. But it’s very close to Bucaramanga, almost a suburb.
Overall, Giron is a nice place to stop and have a look, but I don’t necessarily recommend staying the night.